France's Jean Dujardin plays down Hollywood success

Tue Jan 24, 2012 6:31pm EST
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PARIS (Reuters) - His suave Clark Gable looks have made him an international heartthrob, while his role as silent movie icon George Valentin in French film "The Artist" has earned him a best actor Oscar nomination.

But French actor Jean Dujardin, 39, remains resolutely modest about his success, attributing his stellar rise more to chance than to ambition, or perhaps to the endearing talents of his co-star Uggie, the acrobatic dog.

"Maybe it's a feelgood movie, a love story, a simple story, and maybe there is a cute dog. Everybody loves a cute dog," he told Reuters TV in an interview.

The throwback black and white film "The Artist" won 10 Oscar nominations on Tuesday, including best picture, supporting actress for Berenice Bejo, and director for Michel Hazanavicius.

It has also won three Golden Globes, a Producers Guild Award, and 12 nominations for Britain's BAFTA awards.

For Dujardin, already a household name in his native France, the rise to international prominence has come as something of a surprise, and he admits he feels like an excited child.

Sporting a three-day beard and black t-shirt, in contrast to his smooth alter-ego Valentin, he plays down the prospect of a Hollywood career, however, saying it seems like a distant possibility.

"I don't necessarily plan to have a career in Hollywood, because you can never imagine what your career will be," he said.

"A career comes like that, it is a series of accidents. But it is nothing but accidental, happy or unhappy, in my case more happy than anything, but we will see what happens."   Continued...

<p>French actor Jean Dujardin speaks during an interview about the film "The Artist" in Paris January 24, 2012. REUTERS/Philippe Wojazer</p>